A camera system will help the suspension detect rough surfaces in the road for a smoother ride.
After unveiling the polarizing Vision Ultimate Luxury concept in Beijing, Maybach's chief engineer Jurgen Weissinger has revealed to Autocar that future Maybach models will benefit from some innovative new technology, including “next level” suspension systems that will be an advanced version of Mercedes’ current Magic Body Control system. According to Weissinger, a key element will be a new camera system that will help the suspension detect rough surfaces in the road and adjust accordingly for an even smoother ride.
He told Autocar this technology will enable drivers to “slide over the road.” For the next generation of Maybach models, the company is also planning to launch a new drive program aimed at chauffeurs. Because obviously you don’t buy a Maybach with the intention of ever driving it yourself. “We’re making a special drive program, which means the gear changes don’t happen too often so that the chauffeur can drive in a very comfortable, luxury way. This works without gearshifts and with maximum torque,” said Weissinger. These features are expected to debut in the forthcoming Maybach GLS, which will be facing tough competition from the Rolls-Royce Cullinan ultra-luxury SUV.
Mercedes has always stayed one step ahead of its rivals when it comes to pioneering new technology in its luxury vehicles, and it looks like the Maybach’s upcoming swanky SUV will be no exception. While the Maybach GLS is expected to debut at the Los Angeles Motor Show in November, the Vision Ultimate Luxury concept shown at Beijing could still get the green light for production. Weissinger told Autocar that Maybach is considering bringing electric power into its models in the next five to ten years. “We have to look at electric-powered cars. But we have the 12-cylinder and it’s a very luxury, smooth motor,” he said.
“People want it. But if you speak to innovative Maybach customers, they are also interested in what the future looks like. We have to check out how to bring high-tech electric cars into that future.” While other luxury automakers like Aston Martin’s Lagonda sub-brand are focusing on pure EVs, Maybach Weissinger sees hybrids as a “long bridge” technology for Maybach. “You could have a 12-cylinder with a special gearbox with an electric motor on it,” he said. “There’s lots of possibilities to make the right combination between a big engine and [electric] motor.”